28 June 2006


There's been quite a bit of mourning over the death of that Great British Institution called "Top Of The Pops", but as I said in the Dissensus thread, it don't mean nothin' to me, baby. True, I'm the sort of person who always hopes that Pop will prevail over Rock (a 'Popist', then) though neither do much for me these days. So I absorb myself in abstracts like rhythm, texture and frequency...is that form or content, I wonder?

Besides, my interest in Pop ends roughly where the '80s end, so its probably all just mixed-up with nostalgia anyway. Paul Morley hit it on the head in his book "Words and Music", when talking about Alvin Luicer's "I Am Standing In A Room". Paul loved the piece, but only how it sounded in his head, replayed from memory by the iPod in his mind's eye. He feared listening to it for real, in the present, because it might diminish the music's power. That's how I feel with Pop music. My memory plays it back sounding the way it was delivered to me originally - ie, from a grainy medium wave signal emanating from the tinny mono speaker of a transistor radio; the sounds wafting from the kitchen as my mother prepared dinner, etc. I have no use for a shiny digital version of, say, "Sad Sweet Dreamer" by Sweet Sensation, or "Oh Lori" by Alessi. They sound beautiful in my head, accompanied by warm, yet half-glimpsed, memories of the past. If I actually heard them now, in real time, the disappointment would no doubt be crushing.

So Pop remains archived in the complex biological stereo system of my mind, the sound reproduction degrading in minute increments with each passing year, its sheen now tarnished by the effects of time - currently a nice yellowy-brown colour, but soon to become a mottled, indistinct shade of green...